In recent times, blockchain digital assets, such as cryptocurrencies or digital collectibles, have really taken off.
Non-fungible tokens, which are non-interchangeable digital assets, usually exist within the Ethereum blockchain. NFTs are unique, individual tokens which can hold a lot of value – In 2021, an NFT sold for as much as $69m.
While a digital file can be duplicated, an original will only have one true owner on the blockchain – similar to how a piece of physical art can have copies, but the original is the one that holds the value.
There’s certainly space for NFTs in the sports card collecting hobby, the principles of collecting them are similar (apart from having the physical touch) and there’s already a market for them – with platforms which are purely for sports card style digital assets.
The Best Places To Buy Sports NFTs
OpenSea is a peer-to-peer marketplace for buying, selling and trading any kind of NFT. Although it’s not specialized to sports card related NFTs, they can be brought on the platform.
In order to use the OpenSea marketplace, you’ll need a digital wallet which will be linked with your account. Ethereum is the default cryptocurrency used on OpenSea.
On the marketplace itself, you can use the filters to see what trading card NFTs are currently for sale. Similar to eBay, a listing can either be an auction or a ‘buy now’.
Panini is obviously already a well-known and popular sports card manufacturer. They’ve now also moved into the digital era with their blockchain store which offers ‘the highest degree of legitimacy for a digital collectible and proof of ownership’.
There’s the option to purchase an NFT from their store, or from the public auctions – Where you can also sell their NFTs that you own.
All transactions for Panini blockchain collectibles are done using the US Dollar instead of cryptocurrency – Panini ties all blockchain cards to the Dollar, which is considered a stable currency, because it allows the value of the cards to be driven by the demand for the card, the same way physical cards gain or lose value.
Some physical Panini cards now also come with a digital version which can be acquired through the blockchain store – The initial owner can either choose to claim the digital asset and own it or sell/auction it, at which point the ownership of the digital version of the card will be transferred to the buyer.
Sorare is a Soccer, NBA and MLB card NFT platform, which combines the card collecting element with a fantasy style game which can earn you money, in the form of Ethereum, and other rewards.
The platform uses the Ethereum blockchain, and an existing digital wallet can be integrated with an account to purchase cards on the platform. You can also use normal currency to buy cards on Sorare.
There are different types of soccer cards you can buy, with new versions released every season and split between yellow (/1000), red (/100), blue (/10) and brown (1/1) – The more limited cards can sell for big money.
Sorare is also the official NFT Baseball partner of Major League Baseball – Giving fans the opportunity to collect and own NFTs of their favourite MLB players.
Most recently, they’ve launched Sorare NBA, after getting the licensing to mint and release NBA player card NFTs.
Topps, another big name in the sports card manufacturing space, have also moved into the digital collectibles market. The Topps NFT platform runs on the Avalanche blockchain, which is compatible with Ethereum.
The platform has a store to buy ‘packs’ of the digital assets, and a marketplace where collectors can buy and sell to each other – transactions are done using the US Dollar.
Sports card collectors can buy Soccer and Baseball NFTs, but the selection of sports is more limited than what the Panini blockchain store offers.
NBA Top Shot
NBA Top Shot is a popular digital asset platform, which runs on the Flow blockchain, that sells officially licensed NBA NFTs, called ‘moments’ – perfect for Basketball card collectors.
You can either buy ‘packs’ from Top Shot, which has a random assortment of their NFT moments, or you can buy specific collectibles from other collectors via the platform’s marketplace. The digital assets are purchased using normal currency, like the US Dollar.
The NFTs on Top Shot range from common tier (1000+), rare tier (150-999), legendary tier (25-99) platinum ice ultimate tier (/3) and genesis ultimate tier (1/1). Each collectible is marked at creation with a unique serial number with protected ownership by the blockchain.
NFL All Day
NFL All Day is the Football equivalent to NBA Top Shot for Basketball. It gives fans the opportunity to buy and collect digital football ‘moments’ highlights from the NFL – with all transactions processed and guaranteed through Dapper’s Flow blockchain.
The platform is the official licensed partner of the National Football League Players Association.